HTC One or iPhone 5s?

As a proud Apple fanboy, I  keep trying to like the iPhone but somehow my heart always glimpses back at the HTC One. I guess I should hate HTC for releasing such a great phone because in the past my Android experience was always limited to a few weeks and then I was cured. Looking for articles from other users in a similar situations hoping I could find the one article that can cure me of Android and bring me back “home” to the iPhone. An article titled “Switching back to the iPhone 5: Why the HTC One grass wasn’t greener” made me go “BINGO” for a moment. Unfortunately it did not really convince me. The resins in that article for going back to the iPhone were:

  • Couldn’t get phone to work well with car which is important to me, petty, I know
  • I use an Otterbox and it made it near impossible with one hand
  • I find the iPhone Camera to be better quality as I like zooming further than HTC would allow
  • Too much clutter, IE Blink Feed and Gallery
  • I like the way Mac/iPhone/iTunes sync seamlessly
  • Battery was weak compared to what I’m used to in regards to lasting time and charge time

Sorry, but those reasons do not really work for me.

Couldn’t get phone to work well with car which is important to me, petty, I know

I disagree. Personally I find the iPhone apart from being a phone and music source absolutely useless in the car. It starts by giving the phone a home in the car. the HTC One has a car-dock made by HTC which is just brilliant. It uses premium materials, fits the phone perfectly and adds nice features. For example, it switches Bluetooth on when I dock the phone and puts the phone in car mode which makes the most important features easily available through large buttons.  The iPhone stays in the same mode in the car and operating it is not very comfortable. I can usually just do anything on the phone when I am at a traffic light for a while. Not to mention that there is no car-dock from Apple. Just as for Android, there are a few car apps available for the iPhone, but due to the closed platform the iPhone offers, they cannot be customised. I didn’t find any car home app on the App Store that made me happy. Navigation on the iPhone (at least here in Bangkok) is way inferior to the HTC One.  I tried the iOS Maps app which would just get me lost. I also have Sygic for iOS and Android,  but the accuracy on Android is just way better than on iOS. The iPhone often had problems figuring out where I was, especially on roads like Rama IX Road, where we have the express way on a higher level than the normal road. The iPhone frequently things I am on the Expressway when in fact I am not. It also asks me to make turns (right, left, u-turn) when there is nothing but buildings and walls on either side of the road. The HTC One is certainly not the perfect navigation tool for the car either, but it is much more accurate and I trust it more to get me to the right place.

I use an Otterbox and it made it near impossible with one hand

I don’t use an Otterbox, but although it is possible to use the iPhone single-handed, it feels to me like there is in certain angles too much pressure and I risk that the phone just snaps out of my hand.  The larger size of the HTC One makes me either hold the phone different when I use it with one hand or I use it with both hands. Personally that makes me feel more comfortable.

Too much clutter, IE Blink Feed and Gallery

Again, I have to disagree. On the iPhone I have (since the very first version of the iPhone) multiple screens with icons to my Apps. I don’t think there is any way to organize the icons like sorting them etc, all work has to be done manually. It’s easy now to group apps with folders, but still all the work has to be done manually. It was a bit easier in the past to do this with iTunes, but the latest version of iTunes made it less comfortable. Most of the times I don’t bother to go through the individual screens to find my app but use spotlight search instead.

On Android we have basically 2 layers. The home screens (which include Blink Feed on HTC Sense) and the app drawer which is home to all apps. On the home screens we can not only have shortcuts to apps, but also widgets that can provide useful information. The app drawer can be sorted and it is also possible to group apps in folders. In my opinion, it is much easier to keep the HTC One organized.

I like the way Mac/iPhone/iTunes sync seamlessly

This is the only point I could not agree more with. The way all devices work together, syncing, iCloud etc is just perfect and also probably the only reason I always come back to the iPhone for a while.

Battery was weak compared to what I’m used to in regards to lasting time and charge time

From my experience both devices are getting me through the day ok. I would give the HTC One here a better performance, but then again that would not be fair. Due to the great car-dock the phone always charges while I drive.  The times I used either phone without driving battery life was pretty much the same.

Things not mentioned in the article

It feels like the iPhone is developed for specific markets. Siri is a nice little helper, and although (s)he is kinda useless to operate the phone while driving, it is easy and comfortable to schedule appointments for example. But then I ask Siri for example to find a pizza place close to me. All Siri has to answer is:”Sorry, Michael, I cannot search for places in Thailand” Asking Google Now the same question, I get a list of places around me. Just over the past few months I saw so much improvement in Google services – Google Maps now supports turn-by-turn navigation in Thailand for example – but the iPhone seems to be stuck. And it looks like Apple has no incentive to improve since there are always enough suckers like myself who just need to see the Apple logo magically the ability to make “smart” choice disappears. Even now, writing up this little article, it becomes more and more obvious to me that the HTC One is the superior phone, but the fanboy just tries to ignore the obvious.

In conclusion

I can make my own list of reasons why I use the iPhone, but it is much smaller:

I use the iPhone because Apple has me under their spell. I have the iPhone 5s and the HTC One on my desk, and I know the HTC is the better phone, yet I desperately search for reasons to make the iPhone look like the better contestant.

The questions I have are:

Hoe many people just like me are out there?

How many people actually work up and switched from the iPhone to Android?